Tickle Me Elmo

From Academic Kids

Tickle Me Elmo is a child's toy introduced in the United States in 1996, becoming that year's top fad. Bright red in color and based on Elmo, a Muppet character from Sesame Street, when squeezed, Elmo would chortle. When squeezed three times in a row, Elmo would begin to shake and laugh hysterically. On its back is a velcro access slit wherein reside the batteries.

The 'Surprise Edition' of Tickle Me Elmo, issued in the Fall of 2001, was an elaborate contest. Five of the 'Surprise Edition' Elmos stopped laughing on January 9, 2002, and announced to the people squeezing them that they had won a prize. The grand prize was $200,000.

Installation art made of Tickle Me Elmo

Tickle Me Elmo was the subject of an art exposition at the Ronald Feldman Gallery, in New York City, in September of 2003. Kelly Heaton, the artist, engineered a vibrating coat out of dissected Tickle Me Elmo dolls. The title of the show was Live Pelt.

External links

  • Wired: Elmo's Worth More Than a Tickle (http://www.wired.com/news/culture/0,1284,47368,00.html) on the Surprise Edition
  • Sesame Street: Tickle Elmo (http://www.sesameworkshop.org/sesamestreet/tickle/index.php), an online simulation of the toy
  • Live Pelt (http://www.feldmangallery.com/pages/exhsolo/exhhea03.html) (link contains a nude image as part of the art exhibition)
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